LITTLETON, Colo. –It was Championship Thursday at Littleton High School Thursday morning for Eric Decker and Demaryius Thomas' Football ProCamp. And Decker was on hand to participate in drills and observe the action -- Thomas was there Wednesday.
More than 200 boys and girls from first through eighth grade were working on football skills for both sides of the ball before getting into some game action.
"We're doing a lot of things with skill-oriented stuff and its good for these young kids to learn some things," Decker said. "But the biggest thing is just to give them a high-five or shake their hand, ask how they're doing – that's why they're here. A lot of times, it's about having fun, that they try hard and they're coachable – you can't really teach but if they have those abilities they have a good future ahead of them."
Decker went on to say that working at a camp like this is humbling because he has the ability to have an impact with children.
It's easy to see the fun that the campers were having but Decker came away with some fun anecdotes too.
"Sometimes the kids will say, 'My mom says hi,' or 'My dad has you on his fantasy football team,' cute things like that. Otherwise they just hammer me with questions, 'Where'd you go to school, what do you like, what's your favorite color,' things like that. It's fun because you see these little seven-, eight-year-olds that are just happy to be here. They're not worried about the football skill stuff they just want to hang out and have a conversation."
Decker and Thomas, who both came to the Broncos as rookies in 2010, enjoy events like the ProCamp together because Decker said they have become very good friends.
"We know it's important that we do things together because our competitive nature is that we push each other to be better on the field but again push each other to be better off the field and do things together as far as this camp," Decker said.
"We just think it's even better for the fans and for the people that we give back to that we're always doing stuff together."
The camp is run by ProCamps Worldwide, a company that hosts about 100 similar camps –roughly half of which of football related – across the United States.
While the camp works on skills and drills for the game of football, its less about perfecting the technique of the three-step drop and more about having fun and being involved with the community.
"I think it's important just to be visible and have that interaction with kids," Decker said. "You can't replace that as far as giving back. If you give your time, you give your effort, that's the best thing you can do and that's what's important to us is being visible and just having fun with these kids."